V/R: How Immigration Officers are Intimidating Travellers at Asikuma

Travellers using the Hohoe, Ho-Akosombo roads are asking for an immediate investigation into activities of Immigration officers positioned at the Asikuma check point.

The call comes after officers at the Asikuma check point stopped a Mercedes Benz Bus that was carrying passengers from Ho to Kumasi and questioned passengers amidst intimidation and physical assaults. The incident happened during the early hours of Monday, October 1, 2018.

According to several witnesses that include a seasoned journalist, the three officers were aggressive, intimidating and were specifically targeting vulnerable passengers.

“They look at you, if you look like you a foreigner, they either demand from you to pay an amount of money or you are intimidated and seized from continuing your journey” a victim (name withheld) narrated. This was after the immigration officers had insisted on searching his pocket after he had refused to pay an undisclosed amount of money as demanded by the officers. He was slapped and further threatened with arrest.

He was dragged and confined under a tent.

He said: “I thought the behaviour of the immigration officers were heavy-handed and frightening. They appeared to be stopping and intimidating vulnerable passengers and extorting monies from them.

“When I refused to allow them search my pocket, I was threatened with arrest and later slapped and dragged.

“I asked that officer for his name but he refused to give it and said I could go to his regional commander if I wanted to’’ ….He was abusive… later he mentioned his name as Sherriff and the other one has an old name tag that read ‘Asiedu’.

In November 2016, An Immigration Officer, Daniel Ferguson was arrested by the police for brutally assaulting a staff of Citi FM in a trotro.

Mr Ferguson attacked and smashed the victim’s head with a Motorola mobile device creating a deep cut on the upper layer of his right eye.

An eyewitness said when Ferguson alighted at Nima junction, he hit the victim in the face with his mobile device.

Some Immigration officers for lack of respect for the law continue to intimidate and extort money from poor travellers across Ghana.

It is against the above that, travellers are calling for immediate investigations into the matter so that ‘Asiedu’ and ‘Sherriff’ who were positioned at the Asikuma check point on October1, 2018 can be brought to book

Source: Alhaji Umarh || ghananewsonline.com.gh

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